Team Sky has hit back at "irresponsible" and "uneducated" comments made by Bernard Hinault after he called for riders at the Tour de France to go on strike if Chris Froome starts the race.
Hinault said Froome does not belong on the list of cycling greats after the Brit completed a clean sweep of Grand Tour titles with his Giro d'Italia triumph in May, while still under investigation for an adverse analytical finding.
Froome tested above the permitted limit for asthma medication salbutamol at the Vuelta a Espana last year and Hinault strongly questioned why the Team Sky rider was allowed to enter the Giro with a UCI case ongoing.
Team Sky on Thursday stated in no uncertain terms that Hinault should get his facts straight.
"It is disappointing that Bernard Hinault has, once again, repeated factually incorrect comments about a case he clearly does not understand." a Team Sky spokesperson.
"His comments are irresponsible and ill-informed. Chris has not had a positive test, rather an adverse analytical finding for a prescribed asthma medication. As an ex-rider himself, Bernard will appreciate the need for fairness for each and every athlete. And at the current time, Chris is entitled to race.
"This process would normally be confidential to protect the athlete and establish the facts. Unfortunately, it was leaked. However, both Chris and the team are following the process that has been put in place by the UCI.
"It is clearly a difficult situation which no one wants resolved more quickly than Chris and the team.
"Chris and Team Sky are fully focused on the upcoming Tour de France and won't let these uneducated comments affect our preparation for the greatest race in the world."
The Tour de France gets under way in Noirmoutier-en-l'lle on July 7.
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